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Nine Bulldogs sign with four-year schools, including swimmer Izzie Fraire who joins San Jose State
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Nine Bulldogs sign with four-year schools, including swimmer Izzie Fraire who joins San Jose State

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Hancock College swimmer Izzie Fraire signs a letter of intent for San Jose State on Wednesday.

Nine Hancock College student-athletes signed with four-year schools on Wednesday.

The group included six Hancock football players, a state champion swimmer and two soccer players.

The highlight of the ceremony may have been the signing of swimmer and 2019 state champ Izzie Fraire, the former Righetti High standout who signed with San Jose State.

Fraire captured Hancock's first-ever state swimming title last spring and is gearing up for her sophomore campaign at Hancock College this spring.

As a freshman, Fraire won the women's 200 breaststroke in a school record and personal best times of 2 minutes, 19.62 seconds at the California Community College Athletic Association Swimming and Diving Championships at De Anza College in Cupertino.

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Hancock College football players, from left to right, Kevin Lopez (Judson University), Jackson Valencia (Western Colorado State University), Jerome Afe (Southeast Missouri State University), Brian “TJ” Boone (Carson-Newman University), Ahmeen Reese (Morgan State University), Kobe Tuitele sign letters of intent for four-year universities on Wednesday.

Fraire's state championship culminated a banner state meet in which she finished second in the 200 individual medley on the first day and fourth in the 100 breaststroke on the second day before she made school history the next day.

She wound up breaking the school record in all three events and earning All-American status in all three.

Fraire will swim for the Spartans in San Jose, a Division I program in the Mountain West Conference.

One other Hancock student-athlete signed with a Division I program on Wednesday as soccer player Diana De Leon signed with Fresno State. De Leon prepped at Nipomo High School before spending two years at Hancock. At Nipomo, De Leon played varsity softball, volleyball and soccer.

De Leon anchored the Hancock defense this last season as the Bulldogs made the CCCAA playoffs. De Leon earned Second Team All-Conference honors as a Hancock sophomore.

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Hancock College soccer players Niko Glass (San Francisco State) and Diana DeLeon (Fresno State) pose for a picture after they signed letters of intent for four-year universities on Wednesday.

Hancock soccer player Niko Glass signed with San Francisco State, a Division II program. Glass prepped at Cabrillo High School, where he also played football as the Conquistadores' place-kicker. He was a two-time All-League soccer player with the Conqs. Glass is a native of Russia who was brought to the United States by his adoptive parents.

Glass scored 10 points for the Hancock soccer team as a sophomore and a freshman, with four goals and two assists each season.

San Francisco State went 10-7 this past season. The Gators play in the California Collegiate Athletic Association.

Four of the six Hancock football players to sign Wednesday are out-of-the-area student-athletes.

The two local players to signs were Kevin Lopez, from Orcutt Academy, and Santa Ynez graduate Jackson Valencia, who pledged to play for Western State Colorado University, a Division II program located in Gunnison, Colorado.

Lopez, a 6-foot-3, 300-pound lineman, signed with Judson University. Judson is located in Elgn, Illinois.

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Hancock College athletes pose for a picture after they signed letters of intent for four-year universities on Wednesday.

Valencia, a defensive lineman, piled up 51 total tackles with five sacks and 11 tackles for loss in his career.

One of Hancock's top offensive linemen the last two years, T.J. Boone, signed with Carson-Newman University, a Division II program in Jefferson City, Tennessee. The Eagles went 9-3 last season. Boone was a three-sport athlete at Clinton High School in North Carolina before coming to AHC. He earned Second Team All-Conference honors as a freshman in 2018.

Tight end Jerome Afe signed with Southeast Missouri State University. Afe led the Bulldogs with four touchdown receptions last year. Afe caught 10 passes for 169 yards on the season. Afe, at 6-foot-4, 240 pounds, is a native of Alaska. Afe transferred to Hancock from Fort Hays State, a Division II program where he redshirted.

Ahman Reese, a 6-foot-1, 360-pound native of Norcross, Georgia, signed with Morgan State University. As a freshman, Reese earned a spot on the Dean's List. The offensive lineman majored in Business Management at Hancock.

Lineman Kobe Tuitele earned All-State and All-Conference honors while at Hancock. The native of Olympia, Washington, also signed with Morgan State University on Wednesday.

Morgan State is an FCS program, a step up from Division II, located in Baltimore. The Bears went 3-9 last season.

The class of football players helped the Bulldogs go 19-3 the last two seasons (9-2 in 2019 and 10-1 in 2019) and win consecutive conference championships and back-to-back bowl games.

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